Why asynchronous communication via messaging apps is indispensable for your organization
That customers want to contact your organization easily is nothing new. But that customers want to contact you at any time, via their own preferred channel… is your organization prepared for this? Start with asynchronous communication.
What is asynchronous communication?
When you communicate with your customer asynchronously, the contact is not simultaneous. A customer sends a question via WhatsApp and your organization gets (some) time to formulate an answer. When you communicate synchronously, you are on a (video) call or have an on-site appointment. The contact is simultaneous. You react immediately to each other’s words, questions and answers. The contact must take place at that very moment.
Messaging apps are becoming increasingly important
Most people own a smartphone with, for example, WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, Instagram and SMS. As a result, customers are increasingly “living” in so-called messaging apps. With these apps we can stay in constant conversation with friends, strangers, but also with companies and authorities. All these conversations run asynchronously throughout each other. Recipients reply at their convenience. This is very different from synchronous communication where you communicate with each other live.
If you have children of your own you know what I mean by this. But also more and more people from older generations see messaging apps as the way to communicate with each other. My grandmother, for example, apps just as easily as my kids these days.
With asynchronous communication, you increase customer service response time and reduce the pressure on your colleagues.
Is asynchronous communication more customer friendly than synchronous communication?
Asynchronous communication is a lot more customer friendly than synchronous communication. You give your customer the opportunity to approach your organization at the time and through the channel that suits them. In addition, your customers can communicate in the same natural way as they do with personal relationships: asynchronously, informally and quickly. Because asynchronous communication has become so natural to people, there is an opportunity here for organizations to easily and informally interact with customers and improve the overall customer experience.
The power of asynchronous communication for your organization
Asynchronous communication doesn’t just provide benefits for your customer. It also provides benefits to your organization, provided you use the right tools. With the right tools you can form a complete overview of all asynchronous customer interactions and their context. You collect relevant information and data directly from the digital contact that your organization has with all its customers. Think for example of a photo of the damaged product or previous chat conversations.
Subsequently, you pass on the most relevant data to the other systems within your organization, so that there is an overall picture of the question that the customer has or what the customer is trying to get done. This customer information can be made available to your customer service colleagues, for example, so that they can provide the customer immediately with an accurate answer. In this way you increase the responsiveness of customer service and reduce the pressure on your colleagues. Two birds with one stone.
Asynchronous communication through messaging apps provides better results for CSAT/NPS/CES and service quality. All at a lower operational cost.
Helping your customer even better
Another advantage of asynchronous data communication is that it gives you the opportunity to investigate your customer’s question first. Because before you speak to the customer, you can ask him or her a number of automated questions. For example, you can ask if the customer can identify himself by validating certain personal data. Or you can ask your customer to update personal data himself. The customer service then knows who they are talking to and does not need to check this during the call. Sometimes this also allows you to better assess who within your organization can best help the customer. If you use the systems efficiently, you can bring the customer directly into contact with the right person.
Here’s what asynchronous communication means for your IT department as well as customer service
If you are deploying messaging tools to work with asynchronous communication, it is important that you manage the messaging channels within your organization through a single central platform for customer service (or other departments that need to view customer data). Once this is done, you can route, prioritize and assign the right skills to the message so that it can be answered by the right bot or person within the right SLA. At least provided you use the differences these channels offer in an efficient and intelligent way. At least provided you use the differences these channels offer in an efficient and intelligent way. Then it results in better scores for CSAT/NPS/CES and service quality. And all at a lower operational cost. What organization doesn’t want this?
Find the right balance between efficiency, accessibility, and human contact in your channel strategy
A successful channel strategy requires a balance between efficiency, accessibility, and human contact. Excessive channel steering can lead to customer frustration and loss, while listening to customer needs and providing diverse channels enhances customer satisfaction and creates a positive brand experience.
A well thought out and effective channel strategy can make the difference between satisfied customers and customers going to competitors. Let's look at the importance of a proper channel strategy in serving your customers in the best way possible.
Aspire CEO Kaspar Roos on improving customer experience, managing digital transformation and the future of artificial intelligence
Kaspar is the CEO and founder of Aspire, a consulting firm specializing in Customer Communications Management and Customer Experience Management. Dialog Group and Kaspar have the same mission: to help companies with their digital transformation to improve the customer experience company-wide.